3 players Arsenal should sell in the summer
- Arsenal could miss out on Champions League qualification and may need to offload underperforming stars.
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Arsenal has endured a disappointing campaign in the Premier League this season and currently sits 10th on the table. Additionally, their defeat against Olympiacos in the Europa League has further hampered their hopes of playing Champions League football next season.
Furthermore, the Arsenal boss, Mikel Arteta, has admitted that missing out on Champions League qualification for the third consecutive season will have major financial implications, and the Gunners may have to part ways with several players.
However, this may be a blessing in disguise for the North Londoners, as many of their current players have been constantly under-performing in recent seasons.
Here we look at 3 such players that Arsenal must sell in the summer.
#3 Alexandre Lacazette
Although the defence remains to be the biggest problem for the North Londoners, it is not their only problem. Apart from their vulnerable defence, their inconsistent attack has been equally responsible for the recent failures. The Gunners have managed to score just 39 goals in the league this season, the lowest tally among the traditional 'top 6'.
This has mainly happened due to the underwhelming performances of the French striker, Alexandre Lacazette. The forward has been dreadful in-front of goal and has managed to score just 6 league goals this season. His poor form has cost him his place in the first team.
With the presence of Pierre-Emerick Aubamayeng and the emergence of young players such as Gabriel Martinelli and Eddie Nketiah, Lacazette seems surplus to requirements. Hence, selling him in the summer transfer window may be the best option for Mikel Arteta. Furthermore, they can utilise the transfer fee by making suitable reinforcements in the defence and midfield.
#2 Mesut Ozil
Mesut Ozil moved to the Emirates in 2013 for a then club-record fee of £42.5 million and since then he has been a constant topic of debate among Arsenal fans. While one section of fans consider him the best the playmaker in the world, the other section criticises him for being lazy and ineffective in the big games.
One of the major reasons behind these contrasting opinions is the recurring inconsistent performances from the Arsenal midfielder.
The German's career has been in a downward spiral over the last few seasons and this season has turned out to be the worst of the lot. With just one assist to his name, the playmaker has failed to produce any tangible output with his magical left foot this season.
Another concern for the Arsenal hierarchy is the German's huge wage. The midfielder is one of the highest-paid footballers in the world, however, his performances do not match up to the sum he receives.
Moreover, the 31-year-old is at the twilight of his career and will not have much to offer in the coming years. Hence, it is high time the Gunners offload the German to free up some funds and reinvest in the squad.
#1 Sokratis Papastathopoulos
Arsenal's most evident flaw in recent years has been their defence. The Gunners have been vulnerable at the back and have let in many goals in the past two seasons. One player who has been a major part of the team's defensive frailty is the centre-back, Sokratis Papastathopoulos.
However, Mikel Arteta has taken various measures to ensure defensive solidity. Dropping Sokratis out of the starting line-up on numerous occasions has been one of those steps. Instead, the Spanish manager has relied on Shkodran Mustafi and David Luiz to play at the heart of the Arsenal defence.
Additionally, with new defensive signings such as Pablo Mari and William Saliba waiting to make a mark, it is difficult to see Sokratis getting sufficient game-time next season.
Furthermore, the defender recently admitted that he may leave the Emirates if he is not guaranteed enough playing time. Hence, a move away from the Emirates seems to be the best option for both player and club.Published 04 Mar 2020, 22:53 IST